Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Tongue Drums!

I've been wanting to build a tongue drum for a while now, but I kept putting it off because I knew I would get totally immersed in the music theory details of these little wooden boxes with slits cut in the top.  I saw Steve Ramsey build one and I followed Marc Bublitz's keeks about his experiences with building them, and watching them just fueled my desire to build one.  So I took some time to research, design, and build a few myself and I was right...I did get totally obsessed with these things.

While gathering information about these drums, I noticed a lot of comments in woodworking forum threads like "I would build one but I don't know how to tune it." or "Where is a plan for the tongues?"  So, I set out to produce a video that explains everything you need to know about building tongue drums.

My goals were to make these drums less mysterious and to answer all the questions that were preventing people from getting into the shop and making that first cut.  I hope this video encourages you to get into the shop and make one of these drums.  They are quick and easy to build, fun to play, and they are only as complicated as you want to make them.  No matter what type of wood you use, or whether you tune it or not, you will end up with a nice fun-to-play drum.  If you build one, please contact me and let me know...I'd love to hear about it!

Helpful Tongue Drum Links:
(Search for Bar Length Calculators and Scales using a search engine.)


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  2. I play a number of instruments and Ive recently got into building guitars. I stumbled across the youtube link of building tongue drums. Its a good video and easy to follow. I will be building a tongue drum, following these plans for sure.

  3. We are doing a research project On tongue drums and noneone can find anything. Where did you research.

    1. Hi Benjamin - I just googled it and found some info. Above in my blog post, I put links to all of my templates, documents, sites that I gathered and created.